Practice Management Blog

What is EMR Software? Definition, Benefits and More

When making decisions that are in the best interests of patients, EMR software is one of the first considerations for any practice owner.

Maintaining patient privacy while benefiting from a streamlined workflow leads to better outcomes for your patients and more efficient administrative practice for you.

But if you, like most practice owners, are a health professional by training and experience, not a tech guru, the technological implications of a software solution for your practice may be overwhelming. You might even be asking yourself, ‘What exactly is EMR software?’.

What Is EMR Software?

EMR software is designed to help healthcare professionals manage their patient records. It also plays a pivotal role in automating clinical workflows and increasing administrative efficiency for medical professionals.

What Does EMR Stand for?

Hold up, let’s take a step back and quickly cover the concept of EMR.

EMR stands for electronic medical record. Electronic medical records are digital versions of charts that health professionals use in private practice, clinics and hospital settings. They include clinical notes and information and are used for diagnosis and treatment.

EMR vs. EHR: What’s the Difference?

EHR stands for electronic health record; digital records of a patient’s health information. Overall, EHR/EMR software is aimed at streamlining processes and improving patient data collection and storage for ease of access for improved patient outcomes.

While EMR and EHR are two acronyms often used interchangeably, they’re not the same thing.

First, an EHR is a digital record of patient health information, while an EMR is a digital version of a chart with patient information.

Second, while EHRs are designed to be shared with other healthcare service providers, EMRs are specific to a particular practice.

Third, EHRs streamline sharing among healthcare professionals, allowing patients to move with their medical records. The same may not hold true for an EMR, and the records would not be shared with professionals outside the practice.

Benefits of EMR

With a better understanding of EMR software, we can now take a deep dive into the benefits of EMR for practices and patients.

The key benefits of EMR are:

  • Improved storage: As a digital solution, EMRs allow for patient information to be stored in a more efficient, secure way than paper records, saving physical storage space and making records available at the click of a button, even on the other side of the country.
  • Provides a client history: EMRs make it easy to recall a stored medical history, as well as any treatments that your practice has provided to the patient.
  • Reduces operational costs: EMRs introduce efficiencies to a practice’s administrative functions, reducing the burden on admin staff and practitioners.

Benefits of EMR for Patients

The benefits of EMR for patients include:

  • Enhanced patient privacy: Continued investment into leading data protection keeps your patients’ records safe.
  • Streamlined record-keeping: A centralised system ensures that practitioners have all the necessary information and access to the history of each patient.
  • Improved invoicing: Patients can access invoices through the client portal and pay with a credit card at the click of a button.
  • Automated reminders: Patients need never miss another appointment as SMS and email reminders ensure the patient knows where they need to be (and when they need to be there).

Types of EMR Systems

EMR Software for Small Clinics

EMR software has changed how healthcare professionals manage record keeping. The challenges faced by small clinics differ from those of larger and more established practices, and some of the specific benefits include:

  • Reduced administrative work: Streamlined processes are ideal in a smaller practice with limited support.
  • Sharing of information among co-workers: Busy practitioners don’t need to meet with colleagues to discuss cases if they can get the information they need from EMR software records.
  • Improved use of resources: EMR software cuts down on office resources, such as printers, ink and paper, because records are stored in the cloud. Practices also save space, as physical records are no longer necessary.

Cloud-Based EMR Software

Cloud-based EMR software systems, like Power Diary, are ideal for any practice size. Not only are they cost-effective and scalable, but they’re also easy to use. They can help you achieve compliance with HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), too.

iPad EMR Software

Digital solutions like EMR software systems provide the ultimate convenience for health professionals who are always on the go. Given the popularity of iPads and iOS devices, EMR software developers, such as the team at Power Diary, ensure that the software remains iOS compatible, and you can access it from your mobile home screen like any other app.

There are 3 main types of iPad EMR software:

  • Web-based iPad EMR software accessed through the iOS browser
  • Native iPad EMR software, in the form of an app
  • Remote-access EMR software, which is designed to be accessed through smart devices like iPads

Some key benefits of iPad EMR software include appointment scheduling, data documentation, HIPAA compliance and reminders.

How to Use EMR Systems

To get started, you need to choose an EMR system for your practice. The best way to do that is if you attend a demo and get all your questions answered. After that, set up your login details, become familiar with the interface and features, and get going. When onboarding an EMR system, sufficient training and preparation are recommended to enjoy the full benefits and proper implementation.

You can decide on the templates to use and how to streamline processes, ensuring that the necessary information is stored. You can expect to find options to record a patient’s history, diagnoses, body charts, practitioner notes and more.

Electronic Medical Records Software by Industry

EMR software is relevant across healthcare industries, but the core purpose and functionality remain the same.

Mental Health

Given the sensitivity and privacy of client information, therapists, psychologists and other mental health professionals appreciate the high level of security offered by leading EMR software. From the record-keeping and client history features to the top-level security and support provided to protect client data, the software takes care of compliance and privacy requirements so that professionals can focus on their clients.

Healing & Recovery

Professions in the healing and recovery industry, such as physical therapists, chiropractors, and occupational therapists, use EMR systems to ensure that patient data is always up to date, even on the go.

Specialty Healthcare

Speciality healthcare, including podiatrists, speech therapists, and homeopaths, appreciate the ease of record-keeping. With EMR systems, professionals in this industry can record and use a complete history to offer treatment that considers the whole person.

Health & Wellness

Personal trainers, nutritionists, dietitians, massage therapists, acupuncturists and other health and wellness professionals use EMR systems to support the services that they offer to their clients. The software’s functionalities include monitoring and managing clients and sessions, sending automated appointment reminders, and maintaining accurate invoicing.

EMR Software from Power Diary

Power Diary EMR software is a solution that scales, which is why it’s used by practices around the world, from solo practitioners to large multi-location clinics. As a complete practice management system created for health professionals by health professionals, Power Diary’s robust infrastructure and feature-rich functionality are built to support the demands and stresses of a busy healthcare practice.

If you’re ready to streamline your administrative processes and improve your medical record keeping so you can give your patients the time and care they deserve, it’s time to switch. Start your free trial to get 50% off for 6 months. Power Diary could be saving you time and money starting today!

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